I was recently at a meeting of the best of the best fitness minds in Vegas. Although there are many distractions in Vegas, we managed to lock ourselves away in a conference room from 9-5 to help each other help our respective clients. I feel pretty lucky to be able to rub elbows with those in the room, including Turbulence Training – Craig Ballantyne, Workout Finishers – Mike Whitfield, Ripped in 42 – Rob King, Exercises for Injury – Rick Kaselj, The Pilates Chick – Sylvia Favela, and many more up and comers.
Mega-trainer friend Jay Altman, was intrigued by the fact that I love doing pull ups and have a whole program based around them and other fun challenges. He was wondering how my program is received by the girls in the crowd. (Women, now is your time to stand up and be counted! Your comments down below please!)
I explained to him that women really CAN and SHOULD learn how to do pull ups. It’s not only beneficial for the strength building and physique enhancing results, but it’s such an EMPOWERING movement.
After a set of a million (okay, it feels like a million) pull ups, I feel like I can conquer the world (after a little rest and recovery that is).
Pull ups boost self esteem. If you master the pull up, you can do anything. Well, may be not anything and everything, but it feels really great.
Here’s Jay and my interview where I’ll remind you on one of the best tips to mastering the pull up:
Here’s a fun way to include pull ups into a workout. It also includes two of my other favorite moves: the burpee (oh ya!) and the push up.
What you’ll do is a pyramid style workout. You can count up (as I’ve written) or count down, your choice (or if you’re super hard core, do both!). Either way, have a bucket at the ready. If you do this one right, you’ll be done in no time and you may recycle lunch…
OMG Push Pull Burp!
Here you go with version one:
- 1 burpee push up to pull up
- 1 burpee with 2 push ups to pull up,
- 1 burpee with 3 push ups to pull up, ….keep counting up
- 1 burpee with 10 push ups to pull up
(See how you do one burpee and one pull up per set and the only movement that you count up on is the push up?)
Here’s version two, a little more intense…
- 1 burpee push up to 1 pull up
- 1 burpee with 2 push ups to 2 pull ups,
- 1 burpee with 3 push ups to 3 pull ups, ….keep counting up
- 1 burpee with 10 push ups to 10 pull ups
(In this case, do one burpee and then count up on both the push up and the pull up. Stay in the plank position in the burpee to count up on the burpee.)
You know it’s coming…version three, A LOT more intense….
- 1 burpee push up to 1 pull up
- 2 burpees followed by 2 push ups to 2 pull ups,
- 3 burpees followed by 3 push ups to 3 pull ups, ….keep counting up
- 10 burpees followed by 10 push ups to 10 pull ups
(For this tough one, do the burpee, then drop down to the push up, then jump up to do the pull up. It’s like three different movements, where as in version two the burpee/push up is combined. Make sense? You’ve magically doubled the push ups in version three since you’ll do the push up with each burpee as well as the push up set – Yay!)
If you’re not up for the pull up, you can do an assisted pull up or inverted row. You could even do a bent over row or TRX low row.
Of course if you want more help with your pull ups, be sure to get my program with three levels of difficulty so you’ll be sure to find the level that’s right for you.